New York singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey is back with her fourth studio album titled Honeymoon. With the albums Born To Die in 2012 and Ultraviolence in 2014, Lana has gained immense recognition and a massive following. Doing this largely by developing the persona of a girl who pursues bad boys, drinks and parties all the time, smokes a little pot, and lives life on the “edge.”
On those albums Lana was going for a vintage, 1950’s/1960’s baroque pop feel, which was certainly felt in the instrumentals, but in terms of the lyrics, the subjects matters were approached in a trashy, overdramatic, cliche way that is distasteful and frankly disrespectful to the artists Lana is so heavily influenced by.
These two albums are easily two of the most shallow, unadventurous and uncomfortable albums I have heard in a long time, and unfortunately, with Honeymoon, its just more of the same, if not worse.
Lana is again using the persona that has gotten her this far, but continues to display the persona in such a direct way without any subtlety, that she fails to leave any form of emotional impact. Lana is again a girl who fails to see bad situations in front of her, and anytime she experiences heartbreak in these awful situations, she still fails to see that the situations were awful in the first place.
Take the title track, where Lana disturbingly talks about knowing about this man’s “violent past,” but in typical Lana fashion, she likes this dude anyway. I am not sure what message Lana is trying to get across with this song, but even if there were a message, I would refuse to take anything Lana says seriously because she is so superficial and pathetic.
Then there is the song “Terrence Loves You,” where Lana croons about how she “gets trashed” when she hears her ex-lover’s tune, which is usually Lana’s only method of attempting to get over heartbreak.
There is also the song “High by the Beach,” one of the worst singles I have heard all year featuring one of the most half-hearted choruses I have ever heard.
And honestly, everything Lana does on this album is half-hearted. Even when she tries to invoke the theme of religion in the songs “God Knows I Tried,” or “Religion,” she comes off as so disingenuous because of her actions. The ironic part of it all is that the song “God Knows I Tried,” is followed by “High by the Beach,” which could potentially be purposely placed next to each other to paint Lana as someone who cannot be saved, but her execution is lacking.
The only strong point of this album are the instrumentals, which feature the vintage sound that Lana is going after, but Lana does not give these performances justice with her vocals, which aim to be soothing and seductive, but with her moaning and groaning these songs come off as lazy, unappealing, and especially long-winded.
Seriously, this album is over an hour long because Lana stretches every shallow idea so far that there is nothing to even dive into.
This album is empty, boring, immature, lifeless and there is not a single moment where I felt any sympathy for Lana. And for a pop album, the listener should expect strong melodies and strong choruses that could possibly distract from Lana’s horrendous songwriting, but you don’t even get that from this album.